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SECTION III.

2 PETER II. 4. CONSIDERED.

THE third word which is translated hell, in the common version, is Tartarus. It occurs only once, and is found, 2 Peter ii. 4.-"For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment." The quotation from Dr. Campbell, to which I alluded in my remarks on the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, I shall now introduce. It is a quotation which ought to arrest notice, because it not only gives us information about the origin of Hades as a place of punishment, but assists us in explaining both that parable and the passage before us. He thus writes:-Dissert. vi. part 2. sect. 19.-"But is there not one passage, it may be said, in which the word ads must be understood as synonymous with yeva, and consequently must denote the place of final punishment prepared for the wicked, or hell in the Christian acceptation of the - term? Ye have it in the story of the rich man and Lazarus, Luke xvi. 23. In hell, Ev Tw adn, he lifted up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off and Lazarus in his bosom.' This is the only passage in Holy Writ which seems to give countenance to the opinion that ads sometimes means the same thing as yeva. Here it is represented as a place of punish

AN INQUIRY INTO THE WORD TARTarus.

79

ment. The rich man is said to be tormented there in the midst of flames. These things will deserve to be examined narrowly. It is plain, that in the Old Testament, the most profound silence is observed in regard to the state of the deceased, their joys or sorrows, happiness or misery. It is represented to us rather by negative qualities than by positive, by its silence, its darkness, its being inaccessible, unless by preternatural means, to the living, and their ignorance about it. Thus much in general seems always to have been presumed concerning it, that it is not a state of activity adapted for exertion, or indeed for the accomplishment of any important purpose, good or bad. In most respects, however, there was a resemblance in their notions on this subject, to those of the most ancient heathen.

"But the opinions neither of Hebrews nor of heathen, remained invariably the same. And from the time of the captivity, more especially from the time of the subjection of the Jews, first to the Macedonian empire, and afterwards to the Roman; as they had a closer intercourse with Pagans, they insensibly imbibed many of their sentiments, particularly on those subjects whereon their law was silent, and wherein, by consequence, they considered themselves as at greater freedom. On this subject of a future state, we find a considerable difference in the popular opinions of the Jews in our Saviour's time, from those which prevailed in the days of the ancient prophets. As both Greeks and Romans had adopted the notion, that the ghosts of the departed were susceptible both of enjoyment and of suffering, they were led to suppose a sort of retribution in that state, for their merit or demerit in the present. The Jews did not indeed adopt the Pagan fables on this subject, nor did they express themselves entirely in the same manner; but the general train of thinking in both came pretty much to coincide. The Greek HADES they found well adapted to

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express the Hebrew SHEOL. This they came to conceive as including different sorts of habitations for ghosts of different characters. And though they did not receive the terms Elysium or Elysian fields, as suitable appellations for the regions peopled by good spirits, they took instead of them, as better adapted to their own theology, the garden of Eden, or Paradise, a name originally Persian, by which the word answering to garden, especially when applied to Eden, had commonly been rendered by the Seventy. To denote the same state, they sometimes used the phrase Abraham's bosom, a metaphor borrowed from the manner in which they reclined at meals. But, on the other hand, to express the unhappy situation of the wicked in that intermediate state, they do not seem to have declined the use of the word Tartarus. The apostle Peter, 2 Ep. ii. 4. says of evil angels, that God cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment.' So it stands in the common version, though neither yeeva nor adys are in the original, where the expression is σειραις ζόφου ταρταρωσας παρεδωκεν εις κρισιν τετηρημένους. The word is not γέεννα ; for that comes after judgment; but Tagragos, which is, as it were, the prison of Hades, wherein criminals are kept till the general judgment. And as, in the ordinary use of the Greek word, it was comprehended under Hades, as a part, it ought, unless we had some positive reason to the contrary, by the ordinary rules of interpretation, to be understood so here. There is then no inconsistency in maintaining that the rich man, though in torments, was not in Gehenna, but in that part of Hades called Tartarus, where we have seen already that spirits reserved for judgment are detained in darkness."

This quotation from Dr. Campbell, affords matter for many remarks, a few of which I shall briefly no

tice.

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1st, He declares, that the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, is the only place in Holy Writ, which seems to give countenance to the opinion, that Hades sometimes means the same thing as Gehenna. We have seen already, that he denies that Hades is the place of eternal punishment; and that he contends for Gehenna being this place we shall see in the next chapter.

2d, He declares that," it is plain that in the Old Testament, the most profound silence is observed in regard to the state of the deceased, their joys or sorrows, happiness or misery." If the Old Testament maintains a profound silence on this subject, it ought to be inquired,

3d, How did the Jews in our Lord's day, come to consider Hades as a place of punishment for the wicked? That a change in their opinions on this subject, had taken place from what is contained in the Old Testament is evident; for he says,-" on this subject of a future state, we find a considerable difference in the popular opinions of the Jews in our Saviour's time, from those which prevailed in the days of the ancient prophets." Well, how did this change in their opinions take place? Was it by some new revelation which God made to them on this subject? No such thing is stated by Dr. Campbell, but the reverse. He thus accounts for the change of their opinions. "But the opinions neither of Hebrews nor of heathen, remained invariably the same. And from the time of the captivity, more especially from the time of the subjection of the Jews, first to the Macedonian empire, and afterwards to the Roman; as they had a closer intercourse with Pagans, they insensibly imbibed many of their sentiments, particularly on those subjects whereon their law was silent, and wherein, by consequence, they considered themselves as at greater freedom. As both Greeks and Romans had

adopted the notion, that the ghosts of the deceased were susceptible both of enjoyment and of suffering, they were led to suppose a sort of retribution in that state, for their merit or demerit in the present. The Jews did not indeed adopt the Pagan fables on this subject, nor did they express themselves entirely in the same manner; but their general train of thinking in both came pretty much to coincide."-This statement is surely too plain to be misunderstood. How much plainer could he have told us, that a punishment in Hades was a mere heathen notion, which the Jews learned from their intercourse with them? Could this have been more obvious had he said so in as many words? We presume no man will deny this. He not only declares that neither Sheol nor Hades is used in Scripture to express a place of punishment, but he shows, that the Pagan fables teach it, and the Jews learned it from them. What are we then to think, when this is the account of the origin of the doctrine of hell torments by one of its professed friends? Had this statement been given by a professed Universalist, the cry would be raised that it was a mere fabrication of his own, in support of his system. But no, this is the statement of the learned, and acute Dr. Campbell, late principal of Marischal college, Aberdeen, who lived and died, a celebrated theologian in the church of Scotland. It is notorious, that in this quotation he declares, that the Jews derived these opinions from their intercourse with the heathen. Where they got those opinions he does not inform us. Had they been from divine revelation, the heathen ought to have learned them from the Jews. But here the matter is reversed. The heathen it seems anticipated divine revelation, as to the doctrine of punishment in Hades. They revealed it to the Jews by means of their fables. The Jews it is said,-"did not adopt their fables, nor did they express them

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